Facebook advertising new changes: No more 20% text rule


In the past when advertising or boosting posts with Facebook, content was screened thoroughly and disapproved when text took up more than 20% of any advertised image using the 5×5 grid method.

“Our research has shown that people demonstrate a preference for ads with less text.”   Afsheen Ali, Product Marketing Manager at Facebook

However recently Facebook has provided some leniency towards its advertisement guidelines, eliminating the 20% text rule.

“We are shifting to a new solution to improve this experience which allows advertisers more flexibility while still allowing us to maintain an enjoyable experience for people”

Although, there is a catch with the introduction of their new advertisement rating system that can affect your ads reach, from minimal impact to full disruption.

Basically, Facebook now flags advertised and boosted posts into one of 4 categories:

  • OK – preferred preference with normal ad reach
  • Low – ad reach may be slightly lower than normal
  • Medium – ad reach may be much lower than normal
  • High – ad may not reach your audience

To see how your ad would be rated you can access Facebook’s ‘Image Test Check’ tool and gain insight as to how it would be categorised before submitting your content for advertising.

Facebook notes that these new guidelines do not apply to the following:

  • Movie posters
  • Book covers
  • Album covers
  • Product images: Where an entire product can be seen, and not just a zoomed in image of the product
  • Posters for concerts/music festivals, comedy shows or sporting events
  • Text-based businesses: Calligraphy, cartoon/comic strips, etc.
  • App and game screenshots
  • Legal text
  • Infographics

Our take out from the new changes is that the rules may have changed, but the research still stands. Less is more when it comes to text, so keep your advertised images simple with minimal text, leaving descriptions, quotes or other text for the post itself. This will ultimately maximise your advertisement reach and dollars.

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